Class #3189

Basic Mat Connections

40 min - Class


Take time to build your practice with this Mat workout by Karen Sanzo. She continues on from her Mat Fundamental Series with a class that focuses on creating relationships within your body that you can carry over to the advanced work. She takes basic exercises and finds connections with them so you can start to see the full system.
What You'll Need: Mat

About This Video

Sep 19, 2017
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Hi, I'm Karen Sanzo. And, I'm here to take you through another Mat Class. I've been calling a couple of Mat Classes, here on Pilates Anytime, called Me and my Mat. There aren't any props. I invite you to join me.

This is not a super advanced workout, and if you look back at some of the other filmings I did, you'll see that I brought you through some fundamental Mat Classes, some beginner Mat Classes, We're gonna call this, like, Beginner 2, or Beginner 1 Plus. So join me. We'll be making some good connections. We'll be creating relationships within your body that will then help you carry on to more advanced work on the mat, if you choose to stay on the mat, or possibly on the reformer and other apparatuses as well. So, starting in standing, I'm just gonna start standing sideways here.

Just have my feet be parallel. I'm stacking up my spine, arms down by my side. Going to nod my head, as I round my trunk forward. The knees can softly bend but they're not bending too much. Watch when I roll up, that I unroll my spine and that my head is the last to come up.

When my head lifts, I'm gonna take my shoulders and bring them back. Going to lift my chest up and start to arch my upper-est back, making a karate chop feeling with my arms. Going into upper chest extension. And then, return to level. The head nods.

It doesn't just collapse. It doesn't up and over. The belly comes up and over. My pelvis is staying over my hips as I roll myself down, juicing up the legs, the head drops. I unwind the spine, breathing big into these back ribs, unwinding my spine, bringing myself all the way back to vertical.

I pause, and then I ground down through my feet to lift my chest and my heart any bit higher, to lift and look toward the ceiling. And then I bring myself back to center. Continuing on with the breath exercise here. I'm gonna lace my fingers. I'm gonna put them under my chin.

And what we're gonna do here, is we're gonna do a breathing exercise with your deep neck flexors. I'm going to press my chin down into my hand. Not, press it so down, but just make a little resistance. As I open my elbows like a bellows, I'm gonna lift my head up like this. As I exhale, I'm gonna press my chin gently down, and close my elbows.

I'm gonna turn to the side now. I am still pressing down on my chin, as my neck happens to lengthen. This is an e-centric contraction for the neck. My chin gently presses down. My elbows close.

Inhale. (inhaling) Exhale. (exhaling) Inhale. Even though my head is going back, I'm still pressing down on my chin. (exhales) Last time.

Feet pressed. Chin gently presses, even though I'm letting my neck go into extension. I invite you to try that a couple more times. The pressing down of my chin into my hands, keeps the deep neck flexors engaged as I go back to a lengthened position in the front of the neck and they lengthen. So we'll kind of repeat that in our programming here.

Of course, if anything hurts we don't do it. If it's hard, well we just deal with it. But if it hurts, please, we just don't do it. So now in this position here, starting on our back, we're gonna start with the top of our body. So, rather than doing all the curling at the bottom, watch, it's gonna be at the top.

So now I let my chin go up. The front of my neck lengthens. And I exhale. I lengthen the back of my skull, as I pull my nose inward toward my thighs. When I put my head down, I keep my nose forward.

And then I come to level. I do that again. The nose looks back. My eyes look into my forehead. The front of my neck lengthens.

I exhale. I come to neutral. Then I lift my head against gravity. Smiling helps it be a little bit more challenging. I swear.

And then lower down. There is a tutorial that I do on the deep neck flexors all by themselves, and we talk about this exercise and the importance of knowing how to lift the head. And then lower the head, the neck, the throat, if you will, goes back. (inhales) What we want is to feel the work in the deep neck, as the neck extends and flexes. Continuing on now with the trunk flexion, the neck will curl.

Then the trunk will curl. Then the arms will reach long. And then I'll uncurl. Take time to build this. Nod.

Flex. Curl. Hold. Start breathing here. Inhale.

(exhaling) Legs lift. (exhaling) Legs straighten. Legs lower. Legs sway. (exhaling) Sway other side.

(exhaling) Long. (exhaling) Lower legs. Lower trunk. Lower throat. Lower head.

And rest. Knees bent, feet flat. Lift into a bridge. Holding in the bridge, right away, we connect into our bottom. Take your hands, feel that open up your chest.

Press the feet to lift the bottom. Press the elbows and the shoulders to lift the chest. And then drip yourself all the way down now. You know now from watching other videos, or other tutorials, the positions that you're hands need to be in. Here's one position here.

Karate chop is one. Palms down. We're gonna stay here a little bit longer. And you're gonna not move your left leg, as your right leg lifts up to the ceiling. Hold for five, push it up four.

Three. Two. One. Right leg presses down. Left leg lifts up.

Push it to the ceiling. Hold one. And two. And three. And four.

And five. That leg comes down. Drip your spine, melting your chest all the way down. Soft throat. Everything comes all the way down.

Take an inhale here. (inhaling) As you exhale, knees and feet come in together. Press into your feet. Start to curl your tailbone a little bit, and then lower your tailbone down. Lift your trunk a little bit, reach.

Lower your trunk down. Lift your tailbone a little bit and then lower your tailbone. Curl your trunk. And then lower down. One more time.

Curl the tailbone. And drop it down. Curl the trunk from top to bottom. And then lower it down. Getting ready for our roll up.

The arms come up over the head. The arms lift. The head lifts. The trunk curls. Grab your thighs if you need to.

stretch your legs out. Rolling yourself all the way up and over. Stack up your spine. (inhaling) Turn your palms up to the ceiling this time, like your holding something in the palms of your hand. You're gonna tip the pelvis back, without dropping the head and shoulders.

You're gonna hold right here. Two arms face to the left. Roll down part way. Two arms face to the right. Roll down part way.

Come back to center. Curl up over those ribs, As you round yourself forward. Stack. (inhaling) Palms up. (exhaling) Elbows bend in.

Now from here, tuck the elbows in. Pull your belly in. Roll backwards. Now in an interesting sort of way, this is gonna be a little bit harder. Because something isn't in front of you helping you keep your balance.

And then curl yourself up. Also, keeping your arms back and your elbows kinda tucked in, it lets you not, kind of, humpy your upper back. It lets you curl. Curl. Curl, into your low back.

Now, if you can go all the way back and come all the way back up, then you certainly do that. I'm just gonna go to the part that I can. And it gets that little tightness in there. And then I'm gonna curl up. And then I'm gonna do this one more time.

All the way down. I'm gonna try to give my elbows a little touch down. And then I'm gonna roll the rest of the way down. All the way down. (yawning) Oo, that was a good one.

Okay, single leg circle. Right leg comes in, it comes up. Maybe your knee is bent, maybe it's straight. Let's make this a little challenging. Still a beginner exercise, but let's take the arms off of the floor.

Around. And up. Now, this left leg stays very stable. Around. And up.

And last time. Come up and now reverse it. (inhaling) (exhaling) I really have to work hard through my left leg, through my back ribs, staying heavy. Last one. Bring that knee in.

Give it a big hug. Stir it. Now, I'm gonna put my arms back down on the ground. And now I'm gonna take this circle bigger. And as I reach the leg over across my body, I'm gonna allow my pelvis to rotate, as my right shoulder stays down.

I swing it around. I bring it out to the side. This is the hard part. Hard part. Hard part.

Hard part. Comes in. I reach it over. The trunk twists. I circle down.

Hard part. Hard part. Comes all the way in and up. Last time. Around.

No movement. Boom, hit it. Right there. Comes in. I have to rest.

Hoo! Right leg goes back up. Now reverse it. Now I go out further than usual. I come down 'till it just comes to midline, and then I pull it up. I go around.

Just to midline, pull it up. One more time out. To midline. Pull it up. Knee bends.

Lowers down. So it was a little circle and a big circle. Left leg comes in. Comes up. Nestling my ribs down, look and it's not this, it's just the position of my ribs are heavy.

Arms to the ceiling. Small circle. (exhaling) I moved on that one, a little bit. Around. And up.

Around, and up. Last time. (inhaling) Reverse it. (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) Here's three. (exhaling) (inhaling) Here's four.

It's a little bit more challenging without the arms in. And here's five. Now I'm gonna put the arms down, in a greeting. That back body, okay? That back chest stays lifted.

Back of the shoulders down. Now I reach this leg across my body. I'm looking straight at the ceiling still, come down around. Here's the hard part. It comes up.

I reach. I pull my belly in as I press down with this left arm. I come up. And we'll do one more. Reach, reach, reach.

And then come up. And then reverse. Out, down, come to midline, pull it on up. Out, down, comes to midline, pull it up. Last time.

Head stays. Shoulder stays. Two knees come in. Lower the legs. Put them down.

(inhaling) Inhale, exhale. Belly pulls. (exhaling) And then lifting yourself up all the way into a bridge. And then tuck those shoulders underneath you. You get that bridge going a little bit higher.

One leg bridge. Knee in. Knee up. Lower your bottom. Raise your bottom.

Now, if this is really hard for you, you can just do a knee fold, or you can go back to the previous Mat Class, and I show you how to do a one legged bridge, in a different position. Last time. And up. Bend the knee. Regroup.

Re scoop. In and up. I lower. I raise. Yes my arms are helping me.

Yes my butt is working. All those things are coming into play here. Last one. And come up. Lower the leg.

Regroup. Re scoop. And drip yourself all the way down. Lifting the head. Curling the trunk.

Rolling, oh my roll ups are getting a little bit better. Rounding forward. Rolling like a ball, with a little different oomph. Follow me. Rolling like a ball, hands behind the thighs.

Butt goes way high. And then I stop. I scoop my belly in now. I hope you see that my butt goes a little further over my head. My legs are flailing up a little bit.

But that's okay. And bring 'em in. And now I'm gonna hold my shins in tight. So tighter ball is harder. I'm gonna do three balls.

Followed by single leg stretch. Inhale, one ball. And come up. (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) Last set. (exhaling) Roll up.

Rolling like a ball, followed by double leg stretch. Inhale. (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) Last one. (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) Last one. (inhaling) (exhaling) Round forward.

Rolling like a ball, followed by single straight leg. If you don't wanna do the rolling ball sequence, you can just do the single leg one. Inhale. (exhaling) Basic exercises, that we're connecting to just a little bit more. (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (exhaling) You get the drill.

(exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) We're gonna skip crisscross. Mm. And then drip your spine all the way down. Roll up. Open the legs.

Spine stretch. Doing spine stretch today, put your hands down on the mat. Scrape your hands forward, like you're trying to push something away. As you pull your waist line back. Look.

(exhaling) I push through. Stack up. (inhaling) Arms down today. (exhaling) Round. Stack it up.

(exhaling) arms up. (inhaling) Arms down. Push. Create that connection. Come back up.

(inhaling) One more time. (exhaling) (inhaling) Come back up. Straighten the legs together. Skipping saw, going into spine twist. Lift it up through your ribs.

Long torso. Arms out to the side. So the exercise is two sniffing breaths. Or let's do it three. So it's, (inhales 3 times.) (exhales) (inhales 3 times) (exhales) Look at my arms, Trying to stay completely in line.

(inhales 3 times) (exhales) Legs trying to stay completely in attached. (inhales 3 times) (exhales) Arms up. Tilt it down. Roll it down. Roll it down.

Roll it down. Alrighty. Now. Different exercise. Two legs come into table top.

We've been here before in fundamentals. Belly is in. Now, hands on the thighs. In this exercise I'm gonna let my shins rest. I'm gonna scoop my belly and tilt my pelvis.

But I'm not gonna move my thighs. (inhales) (exhales) (inhales) (exhales) And I'm not gonna drop my chest. (exhales) So I'm really working that low part to shorten the front of my abdomen from the bottom to the top. This is the initiation of rollover. Not throwing the legs over the head.

Although sometimes, we have to do that to get the feeling. Woo. So, now go back to a bridge, and bridge articulatory to see if you can get that same feeling and it's a lot deeper. And then when you lower down, you're not re tucking your bottom. You're just lengthening your back ribs down and then the back of your spine down.

And then your trunk down. Let's do that again. Two knees in. Can you do it with your legs straight? Maybe yes.

Maybe no. So keep them bent or straighten them for a little challenge. (inhales) (exhales) (inhales) (exhales) That's a little challenge. I'm gonna do it back with my knees bent so that you can feel or see, I hope you can see that it's not my shoulders changing. It's really into my low abdomen there.

And then releasing. And then putting those legs down. Let's do one more bridge here. Curling in. Lifting up.

And then dripping yourself, all the way down. All the way down. All the way down. Coming over to quadruped now. Some activities here in quadruped, getting ready for spinal extension.

Or getting ready for swimming. So let's take the right hand over the head, with the palm down and a little bit out to the side. Let's put the shins down. Pull the belly in. Now take this right arm.

And lift it up and down. If it can't lift that high, just start it lower. But we want to be able to get that arm at least head level if not above it, to do swimming when we're completely on our tummy. One more time. Hmm.

And then other arm. Press the right. Lift the left. So the head doesn't change. The arms are engaged.

One more time. Arms come down. Sit yourself back, kind of round your spine here. And then bring yourself up fully into kneeling. So in this position here, your belly's pulled in.

Your sacrum is flat or it's lifted. It's not arched this way or tucked underneath you. It's just lifted to the ceiling. So now we're gonna do a spine stretch in this position. (exhaling) Rounding forward.

So you feel those ribs hug up and you feel your spine round. Now your buttocks is kicking in. And then I drop my buttocks as I pull in my tummy. I lengthen my chest. I arch my chest.

I come back to level. Now I hold level, while I just do a thigh stretch, and lean back with my arms here. And then I bring myself up. Nod the head. Ribs round.

The buttocks will sit back a little bit. I pull my belly up. I lengthen the ribs. Remember sometimes it's not more belly. Sometimes it's these ribs, needing to understand that they're lifting up behind you.

And then unwinding my body up. The arms come down by the side. I do thigh stretch again. Really a loaded exercise in the buttocks, the thighs, and the trunk. Woo.

And then bring myself all the way back. Coming back to quadruped now. Getting ready for weight bearing into the arms. Toes curl underneath. Arms press down.

So let's look at this exercise now as active arms lifting knees. So the shoulder blade position isn't changing. Hold for five more. Four more. Three more.

Two more. One more. Lower your knees down. Now put your shins down. Now let's do a sternum drop here.

So a sternum drop says, my blades are still active but my blades come together as my sternum drops. My blades are still active as my blades come apart, my sternum, lifts. Sometimes the name of the exercise, sternum drop, gets kind of confusing, because the exercise should be, blades working on fire. So this not cat and cow. This is my blades coming towards my spine.

My sternum drops. The blades coming away from my spine. So we're gonna be very active here. Now the knees lift. I'm gonna rock myself forward over my wrists.

And bring myself back. Rock forward. Pressing down into my hands. It could be a little tight on the wrists. That's certainly fine.

It's not a long exercise. It's weight bearing. And then come back. One leg out to plank. Other leg matches to plank.

Nothing fancy. You can break this down to your knees. Hold right here. If you can tolerate, rock forward. Rock back.

Rock forward. Rock back. Otherwise you go to your knees, rock forward. Rock back. Curl the toes.

Stretch out that fascia underneath your feet. And then round yourself all the way down. (inhaling) (exhaling) bBing yourself back out to quadruped, again. Quadruped is such a great position to get things connected in. Shins press.

Arms press. Take an inhale here. Right arm comes out to the side. Now I'm gonna turn my torso toward you. And as I do so I'm pushing this left arm really, really, down into the ground.

And then I come back to center. As I lift my other arm up, I don't just sag in my arm, and like, wig my head out like this, right? I have to press into this arm and as I twist, it's like I'm trying to push that shoulder blade more and more away. And then bring it all the way down. Wooey, that's a good one.

Now let's come to forearms. Let's keep your bottom to the ceiling. Turn your palms up. Okay? Funky little exercise here.

Not really a Pilates exercise. I understand. But it's a researched exercise, okay? So as a physical therapist I love to read research. So this is a position, that is shown to have the best gluteator activity, okay?

The knee is bent. You're on your forearms. Foot is flat, and I thigh pump, or glute pump, my leg up and down. Weight bearing into your forearms, puts a lot of work into your shoulder stabilizers, while I get this right glute going. Let's do five more.

Four. All the rules apply. Head inline with spine. Belly pulled in. Left shin pressing.

Release down. Sit back. Keep your palms turned up. It'll stretch your shoulders in a different way. And then bring yourself forward.

Left leg out. Try not to shift your body like I just did. Let's come back and bring it all level there. And then up and down. Shoulders.

Head in line with the spine. The back is not arching. But the glutes are really working. Especially that left leg pumping. Gluteate it.

Pump it. Whatever word you wanna use. Five. And four. And three.

And two. And one. And bring that leg all the way down. Stretching yourself all the way back. Woo.

Now bring yourself up to high kneeling again. Let's get off the shoulders, into some proximal stability here. So, put your hands on your pelvis here. Take your left leg out in front, and put it down. Take your right leg out in front, and pull it down.

Try not to make noise. Now, with the toes curled up underneath you, this is gonna be a little bit harder. One more time each side. Get those toes curled. Woo.

Now keep those toes curled up. Put your hands on the mat. And see if you can rock back a little bit. Rock forward. So we're just trying to keep our ankle Dorsey flexion and toe extension, which will come into play in other exercises.

Bring yourself back up to vertical. Shins down. Arms by your side. Thighs stretching again. Three of them in a row.

Inhale. (exhaling) (inhaling) (exhaling) Last one. (exhaling) Okay. So we've done our planks and kneeling. Now we're gonna switch to our reverse plank.

We also call it leg pull face up. But we have to first get ourselves situated into our shoulders. So I'm gonna take my fingers, face them towards my pelvis, bend my knees, put my feet flat. So we know that this is not it. Correct?

So we gotta press down on the arms. Lift the chest. I'm using my back body here to lift my sternum and my chest up. So now I have to use that back body to press my feet and just lift up like this. Just hold that right there.

And then lower down. Where else do I use my back body, that I need to get that feeling? So, you be thinking about that, while you do this, and then quickly, I'm gonna show you. I lift up into the bridge. Remember I have to get that back body.

It's not that I'm just arching my low back. It's that I'm getting my upper back, right? So now, let's go back to this one. So get that upper back body. Lift.

And press. Hold, Now if you can, put one leg out. Put the other leg out. And lift. If you can't do that.

Keep your knees bent. Still work through the shoulders. Get the setup of the exercise first. And don't worry about the fanciness of the other part. It will come.

You have to give yourself time. Lift. Hold. So what creates this habit of doing this exercise? Let's just talk about that and hold this.

And kick one leg out, now that you have knowledge. You have skill. And you have the all in attitude. And then lower yourself down. So you have the knowledge.

Hopefully I'm helping you gain the skill a little bit more. And I know that we're all in. Okay, last one. Open chest. Press feet.

Lift. You can stay here all you want. I'm happy with this. Stretching the front of your arms. If you want to challenge, one leg goes down as your bottom lifts, and then lower yourself down.

Bring yourself on up. And round yourself forward. That exercise is hard. And then roll yourself all the way down. (inhaling) (exhaling) Arms come back.

Let's see, let's check in with our roll up. Lift the head. Curl the trunk. Grab your thighs. And then roll yourself all the way up.

Now, let's advance on to open leg rocker. So, hands by your shins. Let's take one leg up to the ceiling. Pull in the tummy here. Fix your shirt.

Take the lint off your pants. And then lift up tall. Now, open leg rocker is a flexion based exercise. So I cannot lead going back, by doing this. Because that's extension.

So I pull in my tummy. And I like, lift, lift my legs up. Sometimes it helps if you lift your eyebrows. So that when I roll back it's almost like I'm pulling my legs out of the socket as I bring them up. You have to be patient.

Oh, I'm so patient there. And you have to roll back. And bring yourself up. Be patient. 'Cause if you're not patient, I'm not even gonna demonstrate what'll happen.

You get all that rocky rolley business. Oo I bent my elbows. Didn't mean to bend my elbows. And then go back, inhale. And then exhale.

Oh that was a good one. One more time. Back. Nothing like pattin' yourself on the back. Hey we all should pat ourself on the back.

Reach your legs long. Lift the chest. Reach your arms long. Tip your pelvis. Roll yourself back.

Roll yourself back. All the way down. Knees come in. Legs come up. Corkscrew.

But we'll do sway first. And then sway. Where else did we do a sway? We did it in our hundred beats swaying. We did it with single leg circle, when one leg went out to the side.

Now we make a circle. Down. Around, up, stop. Curl the pelvis. Don't move the legs.

Mm. I moved my shoulders. Around, come back up. This time don't move anything. Except for the pelvis.

Well, that was better. Around, and then come on up. Scoop. Reverse. Around.

Come on up. Scoop. And then bend the knees. Lower yourself down. Pressing the feet.

Pulling in the belly. Lifting up the pelvis. Reach yourself all the way up. Take a big inhale here. (inhaling) As you exhale, (exhaling) drip your spine all the way down.

Bring yourself to lying on your side. This time, when you lie on your side, you're gonna prop up on your forearm so that we're gonna get the weight bearing into the forearm started. And we're gonna do our sidekick series, from that position. Now, in this position here. You notice that the bottom part of my trunk is longer than the top part, right?

So we're in a side bend position, okay? There's no doubt about that. Legs are coming forward for a little bit of balance. The reminder here is gonna be to not do this. But to do this.

If you need to put your head down at any time, of course. Hand can be on your pelvis. We're gonna lift the leg up. Ten times. Two Three.

Four. Five. Six. Seven. Eight.

I can't believe I'm counting. Nine. And ten. Try to take the leg back and lift up. It's not gonna lift as high now because we're already side bent, okay?

It's not gonna lift as high but we're keeping the information all in the thigh. Two more. Last one. Leg goes back. Long torso.

Bottom leg pressing down, lift up. Ten Nine. Eight. Oh, I had to lift up outta that shoulder. Six.

Five. Four. Three. Two. And one.

Lower that leg. Come all the way down. Rest. Now, we're gonna do a full side plank on that side. Come on up.

Full hand down. Just get yourself up anyway you can, okay? Not with the shoulder in front but with it back in line. Just get yourself up to that side plank and hold that right there. So that your chest and your face is in line with your spine.

Just hold that there. Weight bearing into that right arm. Hold for five. Hold for four. Maybe take your other arm up, three.

Maybe stack your legs up, two. And then one. And then bring everything all the way back down. You need lateral work like that. Weight bearing in the shoulders.

So important. Even if you can do it for less than that amount of time, it's still good to start it. Second side. So back to that deliberateness of practice. The refinement doesn't get changed just by doing a million repetitions.

The repetitions in and of itself don't create the refinement of the movement. Deliberate practice does. Tuning in. Being all in. Being committed, that's what makes the change over time.

So in here. Open the chest. Head in line with the spine. Top leg, ten. Nine.

I'll go ahead and count. I saw that tee shirt that said, I have trust issues. (laughs) I don't know who invented that, but whoever did is pretty cute. Because their Pilates teachers can't count. Four more.

Three more. Two more. Last one. Slide the leg back and up. I probably just plugged somebody.

Five. Four. And three. And two. And one.

Slide the leg back. One. Two. (groans) Three. Four.

Five. Six. Seven Side body, eight. Nine. Ten.

Now we know there's a million different leg variations but I wanted to do the leg variations with the different position of the trunk. Prop on up. Full side plank. Hand long. Notice now, my shoulder isn't directly over my wrist because when I lift up, this shoulder then comes over that wrist.

Head in line with the spine. Holding the length here. Bottom foot presses down. Maybe the hand comes up. Maybe the other hand comes up.

We hold. Five. And Four. Weight bearing into that left shoulder, three. And two.

And one. Leg comes down. Arms come down. Rest, right there. (inhales) (exhales) Rolling down.

Pulling the belly all the way in. Now bring the knees into the chest. Lift the head. Curl the trunk. Press the legs long.

I'm gonna do a rollover now, and you're gonna join me. And we're gonna do it with a little bit of momentum on purpose. So as you roll down, the belly pulls in, you start to get that tip of the pelvis. The arms press down. And the legs lift over.

And then as you come up, you bring yourself all the way over. Don't worry about the opening and closing of the legs, just start to get the curling of the trunk. Two, let's do three more. Lift. As you progress your practice, the rollovers will become a little bit more intense.

Varying your leg position. Last one. Yes, you use your arms. Unless you're doing balance control, then your arms are over your head but we're not doing that right now. So stack up your spine.

Bend your knees in for seal. So in the seal exercise, I like to really get my arms, really underneath here. So that, as I pull my thighs into my arms, I can let my waist line, kind of go back. Kind of like stomach massage on the reformer, if you've ever done that. But I'm not gonna sit up real tall.

Because it's a flexion based exercise. So I roll back. I'm gonna go back on an exhale, so the inhale will try to help me come up. Inhale. And then exhale.

Now I'm gonna inhale here (inhaling) Exhale tip and roll (exhale) inhale. (inhaling) Exhale. (exhaling) Inhale. Now I'm gonna linger in the back phase to get the clapping. The clapping, look, comes from the hip.

Hip. Hip. That's the action. So I'm gonna inhale here. Exhale back.

Clap, clap, clap. Inhale up. Patience. Clap, clap, clap. Back.

Clap, clap, clap. Up, patience. Clap, clap, clap. One more. Back.

Clap, clap, clap. Up. Clap, clap, clap. Lengthen the legs. And then drip your spine all the way down.

All the way down. Ending this session, with a little dynamic, kind of like single leg circle again. But just cross that leg all the way over your body. And this time when you bring it back, bend that bottom knee and catch it. Take both of your hands, put them on each of your ankles, lift up your head and snuggle those back ribs down.

And then lie yourself back down. And then stir. Kind of around your pelvis, or your sacral area. So the leg that's on top, will get the deeper stretch. You know, this is dynamic movement.

So this is all the movement that provides the fascia with it's information. And then switch. Now the right leg's down. Left leg is up. Crossing that leg all the way over.

Letting the spine twist, and I'm gonna bend that other knee in and let it catch. Two hands grab the shins. Get my bottom ribs to go back and then lie my chest down. My throat down, and then my neck down. And I stir.

(inhaling) (exhaling) Now we're not done yet, okay? We're almost done. Gonna do that nice roll up, that we've worked so hard to do. Let's do that one more time. (inhaling) (exhaling) Add an inhale.

(groaning) And then bring yourself up to standing. After we do that work in mobility and the stretching, watch we're gonna do a stand and lift. So I call it like, climbing. So I put my left hand on my left bottom. And lift my right leg up.

And then I can stay here, and you'll see that that's nothing, or I can juice up this left bottom as I lift my right arm and my right leg higher. Get longer, longer, longer, from the bottom of my left foot to the top of my fingers. Rest. Other side. Lift.

From the bottom of my right foot, oo, there I am. Gettin' lengthened out. And then I'm really looking for the shark, and then reach up. Lengthen. And then down.

One more time left arm, left leg. Juice up that thigh. Put some juice in there. And then bring it down. Last time.

Rolling yourself all the way down. Keep your body weight over your feet. And then unwind. That's my tight spot, right there, that kinda keeps me from doing some rolling sometimes. Thank you for joining me for Mat and Me.

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2 people like this.
Loved this Karen, particularly the roll back with momentum. Roll back is a real challenge for me :)
Love your classes thanks Karen, particularly all of the small variations that you pack into your routine that bring a different dynamic; the roll back with bent arms, the leg circle variations etc. I also like the stretch holding the buttock at the end:) A small 'tweak' but a useful cue (I will have to get my class to come up with a creative name for that one). Thankyou!!
1 person likes this.
Love your classes,the breakdowns and variations are terrific.
1 person likes this.
Thanks Karen for a most unusual class. I love all the talking points and information.
1 person likes this.
Karen, I really love it, talk,movements, transition and all that new not necessary I you said Pilates movement but we need them so much in our life .Looking forward to bring them to my class. Thank you
2 people like this.
Thank you Karen. Great level 1/2 class, your information and cueing were awesome as always! Look forward to adding some of those little gems to my mat class tomorrow morning.
That was pure loveliness. Your cueing is divine. Thank you.
Excellent class Karen. Greetings from Spain. Saludos desde España.
Diana M
1 person likes this.
This class though....loved every minute of it!
Melanie H
1 person likes this.
stunning class!!! xx
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